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Bricks and Boards

Usually, I don’t keep broken bits and pieces of stuff, but in this case, I made an exception. My mother had a special gift for creating gifts that remind us of something she wanted us to remember. She always let us know why the gift was so important and what it symbolized. I glanced at my shelf and saw the picture of Mamoo, my great grandmother, behind one such gift from my mother. I unknowingly had paired the two, and when glancing over to the shelf, the symbolism of this juxtaposition landed like a ton of bricks on one of the few remaining pieces of 514’s foundation.

I loved 514 and all the people in it. Yet, from the perspective of an old woman looking back with fondness on her childhood years spent with such loving people, the realization regarding their world struck me as hard as a brick. I had a choice, forget about it, ignore it, or own up and learn from it. To do this took a bit of soul searching, yet, I believe it is the beginning of trying to heal hurts felt by others.

"I don't think you should publish it," my husband advised and added, "I wouldn't."

Yet with all the truth-hiding stuff out there, along with erasing history and people's role in it, and then ignoring whatever doesn't apply to us, we are in danger of making similar mistakes. History repeats itself when people refuse to learn from it. This takes self-reflection, soul searching, and admitting to tough truths.

Therefore, I published this piece. I hope it opens conversations, but I also hope that it highlights that all people have flaws; all people have good, and it is important to remember that with love.


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